Hamzah Khalique-Loonat

Liverpool 4-0 West Ham: A Tactical Breakdown

Liverpool 4-0 West Ham: A Tactical Breakdown

Liverpool picking up where they left off at the end of the 2017/18 season would have been the perfect way to kick start a league season, and Liverpool did just that. There were 92 days between Liverpool's last home league game against Brighton and the opening fixture against West Ham, but the results were identical: 4-0 drubbings. However, while the results may have been the same, the personnel and the tactics were certainly not. Alisson and Keïta were the only real …
Liverpool 2018/19: A Tactical Preview

Liverpool 2018/19: A Tactical Preview

How do Liverpool play? It's a simple question, but with the arrival of both Naby Keïta, Fabinho and Alisson, as well as the progression of Liverpool's tactics under Jürgen Klopp since he joined in 2016, the answer requires a more detailed response than the question initially indicates. There are three main tactical phases in football: on-ball, off-ball and the transition. With Liverpool's signings and their skillsets, the on-ball phase may be the one most different this season. Hence, we'll start …
Why We're Thinking About Injuries All Wrong

Why We're Thinking About Injuries All Wrong

The season is yet to kick off, but the bodies are already piling up in Liverpool's treatment room. Joel Matip, having just returned from an injury which required surgery, is back on the sidelines, whilst Adam Lallana, who started a single league fixture in 2017/18, is also injured, after making his way through the first few weeks of pre-season. Ragnar Klavan, with a hamstring issue, joins the injury roster and Oxlade-Chamberlain - a player who struggled with injuries during his …
Faith and Football: Liverpool's Muslim Men

Faith and Football: Liverpool's Muslim Men

What do Mo Salah, Sadio Mané, Xherdan Shaqiri and Naby Keïta have in common? Besides their football club, of course. The answer I'm looking for though is their religion, Islam. It's very rare in my writing that I stray away from tactics, statistics or areas in which I feel well-versed in, indeed, identity and faith are aspects rarely covered by sporting literature in general. Exceptions do stand out - take Muhammad Ali as a physical manifestation of a religiously-centred sportsman, …
What next for Loris Karius?

What next for Loris Karius?

The signing of Alisson was a huge statement of intent from the club. Having reportedly singled him out as far back as January, it was clear that Jürgen Klopp was after a new goalkeeper, even before the closing stages of the 2017-18 season. Until the Champions League final though, Loris Karius was doing a pretty solid job. He was a clear improvement upon Simon Mignolet and seemed to be growing in confidence as the season went on. His performances began …
Alisson Becker: A Statistical Analysis

Alisson Becker: A Statistical Analysis

Alisson is one of the most coveted goalkeepers in the world, but Liverpool's new number 1 is a relative newcomer to top-tier club football. What has set him apart from other top goalkeepers across the world? In AI's Transfer Committee podcast, @DanKennett collected and analysed a selection of goalkeeping statistics, illustrated in the graphic below. Whilst in AEyeScouted, Dave Hendrick, with Gags Tandon, discussed potential goalkeepers. Jan Oblak seemed Dave's first choice, although an upfront payment of £89m made this particular …
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain: Worth the Wait

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain: Worth the Wait

It's still yet to be a year since the day Liverpool signed Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain from Arsenal for £40 million. On the day he left, Arsenal fans had mixed emotions; on one hand, a fan favourite with undeniable talent had left, and that was a shame, but considering his ambitions to play in centre midfield, and a tidy £40 million for a player who was in the last year of his contract, it seemed a deal that was more than acceptable. …
In-Depth Naby Keïta Analysis - Welcome to Liverpool FC

In-Depth Naby Keïta Analysis - Welcome to Liverpool FC

He's finally here! Liverpool's new number 8, Naby Keïta, is simply a phenomenon. In two seasons, he not only established himself as one of the best midfielders in the Bundesliga but in all of world football. In buying Keïta, Liverpool are not just improving their side in the present, they are investing in the future, with the young Guinean with many footballing years ahead of him, and Jürgen Klopp's squad still improving, which will certainly bring even more out of …
Why Jürgen Klopp is Owed an Apology

Why Jürgen Klopp is Owed an Apology

The 2017/18 season has been one of the most memorable campaigns in years. Even the 2013/14 league campaign was given a run for its money as the most entertaining season in this millennium as Liverpool romped their way not just across England, but also Europe, putting teams to the sword with a free-flowing, all-smiling, goal-scoring bunch of hardworking madmen. Beautiful. The season had emotions galore: elation, devastation, ruefulness, and now nostalgia. But that nostalgia actually masks something that fans are …
Loris Karius: Inside the Mind of a Goalkeeper

Loris Karius: Inside the Mind of a Goalkeeper

Recently, I found myself reviewing my notes for my FA level 1 coaching course, and came across the FA's "Four Corner Model" of long-term player development. In the four corners are "Technical/Tactical", "Physical", "Social" and, lastly, "Psychological". Very often, we focus on the technical/tactical and physical aspects of the game when we look at or analyse teams and players at the expense of those other two aspects, indeed, there's far more glamour and associability with the technical and physical sides …
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